Are you interested in becoming an esthetician but unsure about the cost of schooling?

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: the cost of esthetician school varies depending on the program and location, but typically ranges from $3,000 to $10,000.

In this article, we will provide a comprehensive guide to help you understand the costs associated with esthetician school, including tuition, fees, and additional expenses.

By the end of this guide, you’ll have a better idea of how much you can expect to pay for esthetician school and how to finance your education.

Factors That Affect Esthetician School Costs

Esthetician school costs can vary depending on a number of factors. Here are some of the key factors to consider:

Type of Program

The type of esthetician program you choose can have a significant impact on how much you pay for your education. For example, a certificate program may cost less than an associate degree program. However, keep in mind that a certificate program may not provide you with as much comprehensive training as an associate degree program.

In addition, some schools offer online esthetician programs, which can be more affordable than traditional in-person programs. However, online programs may not offer as much hands-on experience, which can be important in this field.

Geographic Location

The cost of esthetician school can also vary depending on where you live. Schools in larger cities or more affluent areas may have higher tuition rates than schools in rural or less expensive areas. In addition, the cost of living in the area can affect how much you’ll pay for things like housing and transportation.

School Reputation

The reputation of the school you choose can also affect how much you pay for your education. Schools with a strong reputation may charge more for tuition and fees. However, keep in mind that attending a well-respected school can also improve your job prospects after graduation.

Duration of Program

The length of the esthetician program you choose can also impact the cost. Generally, longer programs will cost more than shorter ones. However, a longer program may provide you with more comprehensive training and prepare you better for your career in this field.

It’s important to carefully consider all of these factors when choosing an esthetician program. By doing your research and comparing options, you can find a program that meets your needs and fits within your budget.

Tuition and Fees

Esthetician school is an investment in your future, and it’s important to understand the costs associated with the program you choose. In general, the cost of esthetician school can range from $3,000 to $10,000 or more depending on the program and location.

Public vs Private Programs

Public esthetician programs tend to be less expensive than private programs. For example, an esthetician program at a public community college may cost around $3,000 to $5,000, while a private program could cost upwards of $10,000 or more.

Community College vs Private School

Attending a community college for esthetician training can be a cost-effective option for those on a budget. However, private schools may offer more specialized training and individual attention from instructors. It’s important to weigh the benefits against the cost when making your decision.

Community College Private School
Tuition $3,000 – $5,000 $10,000 or more
Program Length 6-12 months 3-6 months
Specialized Training Less specialized More specialized
Individual Attention Less individual attention More individual attention

Additional Fees

It’s important to consider additional fees that may be associated with esthetician school, such as textbooks, uniforms, and equipment. These fees can add up quickly, so it’s important to budget accordingly. Additionally, some programs may require students to pay for licensing exams or state board fees.

Additional Expenses

Aside from tuition fees, there are other expenses that you need to consider when attending an esthetician school. Here are some of the additional expenses:

Books and Supplies

Esthetician school requires students to purchase textbooks, workbooks, and other supplies such as skincare products, facial tools, and makeup. The cost of books and supplies may vary depending on the school and the program you are enrolled in. Some schools offer bundles or packages that include all the necessary supplies for a specific program, which can save you money.

Uniforms and Equipment

Most esthetician schools require students to wear uniforms during their practical training. These uniforms can be purchased from the school or a designated supplier. The cost of uniforms may range from $50 to $200 depending on the quality and brand. In addition, students are required to bring their own equipment such as facial beds, stools, and lamps. The cost of equipment may vary depending on the brand and quality, and can range from $500 to $2,000.

Licensing and Exam Fees

After completing your esthetician program, you are required to obtain a license to practice in your state. The cost of licensing may vary depending on the state, but on average, it costs around $100 to $150. You also need to take and pass a licensing exam, which may cost around $150 to $300. Some schools include the licensing exam fee in their tuition, so make sure to ask your school about this.

It’s important to note that these additional expenses are not included in the tuition fees and may add up to a significant amount. It’s best to budget and plan accordingly to avoid any financial surprises.

Financing Your Education

Esthetician school can be expensive, but there are several financing options available to help you pay for your education. Here are some of the most common ways to finance your esthetician education:

Scholarships and Grants

One of the best ways to pay for your esthetician education is through scholarships and grants. There are many organizations that offer scholarships and grants to students pursuing careers in the beauty industry. Some of these organizations include the American Association of Cosmetology Schools, the Professional Beauty Association, and the National Coalition of Estheticians.

You can also check with your school’s financial aid office to see if they offer any scholarships or grants specifically for esthetician students. Make sure to research all available options and apply to as many scholarships and grants as possible to maximize your chances of receiving financial aid.

Student Loans

If scholarships and grants don’t cover all of your esthetician school costs, you may need to take out student loans. The most common types of student loans are federal loans, which are offered by the government, and private loans, which are offered by banks and other lenders.

Before taking out student loans, make sure to research the interest rates and repayment terms of each loan option. Federal loans typically have lower interest rates and more flexible repayment options than private loans, so they may be a better choice for most students.

Payment Plans

Many esthetician schools also offer payment plans that allow students to pay for their education in installments over time. These payment plans can be a good option for students who can’t afford to pay for their education upfront or don’t want to take out student loans.

Make sure to read the terms and conditions of your school’s payment plan carefully, as there may be interest rates or fees associated with this option. Also, be sure to budget for the monthly payments to ensure that you can afford them without sacrificing other essential expenses.

Comparing Financing Options

Financing Option Interest Rates Repayment Terms Pros Cons
Scholarships and Grants N/A N/A No repayment necessary, does not accrue interest Competitive application process, may not cover all costs
Federal Student Loans Fixed interest rate of 4.53% (for 2019-2020 academic year) Standard repayment term of 10 years, but can be extended up to 25 years in certain circumstances Lower interest rates than private loans, flexible repayment options, no credit check required May not cover all costs, limited borrowing amounts
Private Student Loans Variable interest rates, typically between 5-12% Varies by lender, typically 5-20 years Can cover all costs, may have more flexible repayment terms than federal loans Higher interest rates than federal loans, credit check required, may require a co-signer
Payment Plans Varies by school, may charge interest or fees Varies by school, typically 6-24 months No interest charged if paid off on time, no credit check required May have fees or interest charges, may not be able to cover all costs

Remember to carefully consider all of your financing options and choose the one that is best for your individual financial situation. With the right financing plan, you can achieve your dream of becoming a licensed esthetician without breaking the bank.


Becoming an esthetician can be a rewarding career, but the cost of education can be a barrier for some.

By understanding the factors that affect esthetician school costs and exploring financing options, you can make an informed decision about your education.

We hope this comprehensive guide has provided you with the information you need to take the next step in your esthetician career.

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